Advanced Television

Analyst: US Disney+ subs to surpass Hulu by 2024

September 15, 2020

According to research firm eMarketer’s latest estimates for OTT video services in the US, Disney+ will have 72.4 million users in 2020, representing 32.1 per cent of OTT viewers.

The number of Disney+ viewers has swept past that of Apple TV+ (18.8 million), which is impressive given that both services launched in November 2019. Additionally, the Disney+ audience size is on track to surpass that of sister platform Hulu by 2024.

“Since its launch, Disney+ has been able to grow quickly by using a low price point and leveraging a vast library of content,” notes Eric Haggstrom, eMarketer forecasting analyst at Insider Intelligence. “Bundled offerings with Hulu and ESPN+, as well as distribution deals with Verizon, have enabled it to grow new subscriptions quickly and reduce subscriber churn.”

The service will experience double-digit growth each year through the end of the forecast period. By 2024, Disney+ viewers in the US will surpass Hulu’s viewers—123.4 million vs. 115.6 million, respectively.

“Disney+ has seen rapid audience growth and has partially benefitted from lockdowns and stay-at-home orders,” Haggstrom adds. “However, while Covid-19 has helped drive adoption of the service, movie and TV production shutdowns could act as roadblocks. It will be difficult for Disney+ to continue growing viewership in 2021 with a light batch of new releases.”

In 2020, 225.4 million viewers will use a streaming service at least once per month, up from the 221.9 million viewers we had previously expected back in Q1. This figure will grow to 237.1 million in 2024.

Netflix is still the top subscription streaming service in the US, with 168.9 million viewers, followed by Amazon Prime Video at 130.1 million.

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